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Trying to setup Remote Desktop on a homenetwork

Posted on 2009-07-12
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Last Modified: 2012-05-07
I've got a few machines running vista and a few running Windows 7, but can't seem to get the remote desktops working.
I've done all the sharing and firewall stuff I think.
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Question by:jodyfaison
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by:smiffy13
ID: 24837283
I need to know what you've done so far: to enable remote desktop you need to have Vista Business or Ultimate editions, I guess your Windows 7 PC are ultimate editions, you need to tick the box to allow remote desktop, this will automaically configure windows firewall. Are you using windows firewall or something else? If something else, you may need to open TCP 3389. Next you'll need to give a user id a password and allow that user to login by remote desktop. Then from another PC on your network, open the remote desktop client program and type the name of the target PC, it should then prompt you for the user id/password.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 24837312
What would be a GREAT HELP in helping you is knowing EXACTLY what you DID do already, EXACTLY what versions of Windows you have (Vista Business, Vista Home, Vista Ultimate), and exactly what error messages you are getting.
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by:jodyfaison
ID: 24837352
Ok, lets see.
My main pc is windows 7, rc 7100 from which I'd like to remotely connect to all 3 other machines in the network.
My laptop is also windows 7, rc 7100 - The other day I was trying to set it up to access my main PC remotely from an off site. I did some research and followed instrucions to open port (forward) 443 through my wireless router. In additon to opening ports in windows firewalls and setting all the options available in the remote desktop seciton available from viewing properties on "my  computor." Never could get through. I got what seem to be the standard error message. "Either remote network is not setup or your machine is turned off, or one other obvious choice.
Tonight I've just been trying to connect from my laptop to a Media box machine that runs Vista Ultimate. I would also like to connect to my wifes laptop that runs Vista Home Premimium;
thanks.
I can get a screen shot of that error message. I'll do that and post it.
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24837370
Ok, yes the Win 7's are ultimate. I'm using Mcafee firewall on wife's laptop and windows firewall on the other three machines.
Clipboard-Image.jpg
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by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 100 total points
ID: 24837372
Vista Home Premium does not support Remote Desktop connections TO it.  The only way you can get Remote Desktop working for that is to upgrade it to Vista Ultimate or Windows 7 Ultimate.

Port 443 is for SSL and is NOT an RDP port.  You need to open/forward port 3389 and/or edit the Windows registry on one or more machines you want to connect to to use a different port as per this article.
http://www.walkernews.net/2007/08/01/how-to-change-remote-desktop-listening-port/
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24837410
Ok, got into my main desktop pc from my laptop - within the network. yea. Now I'll go check the media machine, add a password I guess.
Oh it was port 3389 I set up the other day, though I set it for tcp and udn (?), using the both option. I also gave it a range of 3389 - 3392. Maybe these were problems.
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by:smiffy13
ID: 24838019
OK - so you're making progress! Once you get all your "non-Home edition" PC's working then you can move on to configuring your router. I've found http://portforward.com/ a good resource for how to configure most routers. You'll need to fix the internal IP address to your target PC, so that you can configure your router to forward the remote desktop request to the target PC. Once that works then use the link from leew to configure your other PC's and put the additional entries into your router.
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by:jodyfaison
ID: 24838041
yes got all my network (RDP eligible)  PC's working.
Now if I'm out somewhere I'd like to be able to connect to the home desktop, as you're saying think.
Can I test the connections from my home network, like before I've been connecting with the internal ip's (i guess ) like 192.168.1.104 and 103 etc.
But If I try to use the external IP will I get an accurate test if I'm on the same home wireless network?
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by:smiffy13
smiffy13 earned 150 total points
ID: 24838508
yes it should work: type in your ip address and see if you get a log-on screen for the target PC.

BTW: do you have a static ip address? If not, then your home ip address is likely to change, then you won't be abale to connect until you find out what it's changed to. A solution to this is to create a free a/c on www.dyndns.com choose a domain name and save your IP address. To keep the ip address up-to-date, install DNS updater on one of your home PC's: http://www.dyndns.com/support/clients/windows.html
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24846160
got a little stomach bug... back on this tommorow.....thanks for your patience
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by:apochimongitus
ID: 24854911
If your router supports port redirecting, it is possible to connect to the router ip (ie your external ip) on a different port, say 3391 and redirect that port to a local ip address on port 3389. That way, you can connect directly to any of your home computers via an rdp connection on a computer on an outside network. one thing that would be good to setup also, is reserved ip addresses for your local machines, that way your config wont break if the DHCP server decides to give one of your computers a different local ip address.

Open up the Remote Desktop Connection applet and type in your external ip address followed by a colon then the port number 121.x.x.x:3391 (for instance). Let's say you've configured three desktops to accept incoming rdp requests and setup the port redirection on your router to be the following:

incoming port 3389, redirect port 3389, ip address 192.168.1.101, computer name PC-1
incoming port 3390, redirect port 3389, ip address 192.168.1.102, computer name PC-2
incoming port 3391, redirect port 3389, ip address 192.168.1.103, computer name PC-3

By typing your external ip address and the correct port number in the <ip address>:<port number> format you can connect to any of pc 1, 2, or 3.

Hope I haven't confused this for you. It can be complicated but once you get your head around it, it makes a lot of sense.

Regards,

Apochimongitus.
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24860209
wow, Apochmongitus, sounds very interesting. I have not been able to connect outside of the local network yet. I'm going to "study on" your solution a bit and, as you say, see if I can get my head around it.  This method, though, will not get aournd a windows version (Home edition) that doesn't accept incoming remote desktop will it?
And I do need to set up the static IP with dyna*, as suggested by Smiffy13, before doing the procedure, right?
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apochimongitus earned 250 total points
ID: 24865190
jody,

I have just done a quick search online and there are alternatives that enable you to be able to use remote desktop connections on windows xp home. I have not tested this method so you might have to 'suck it and see'...

http://www.mydigitallife.info/2008/06/14/install-and-enable-remote-desktop-in-windows-xp-home-edition/

You don't need a static ip address straight away... get it working first (most ISP's don't change you IP all that often) and then look at getting a static ip with your isp. Just out of curiosity, what sort of router/modem do you use? It may affect your ability to get all of this sort of thing configured.

Cheers,

Apochimongitus.
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24866170
Yes, I have a linksys WRT54G, like half of America, and an RCA modem from/for Comcast IPS.
Odd thing though, when I went in today to see if could port forward (I know I can open up ports, but I've never tried re-directing them) the browser interface (browsing area) goes blank after I sign in. ??
I've lowered the intranet settings in IE8 but to no avail. If I put in the wrong credentials I get a 404 but with the same info that got me in last week I now just get blankness.
I think I  get my "head around" the procedure you're describing, but I'm not sure the advantage? I may be missing something somewhere, usually I am. haha
Of course if it just gets me in thats an advantage now!
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24866181
Oh sorry meant to attach this screen shot of the router, since I have it handy. I forward, opened ports, before through the Applications and gaming tab.
thanks for the link by the way.
I have Vista home premium, but might be the same as the XP. I'll check it out.
Clipboard-Image.jpg
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24868287
Ok, well a router reboot solved the nysterious problem and I've re-routed the machines. Gonna let it rip, be back soon.
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Author Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 24876465
Yep, found that I had a digital error in my rounting... I'm in there like a champ now.
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Author Closing Comment

by:jodyfaison
ID: 31602707
thanks
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